This paper explores mourning and forgiveness not simply as sources of existential, political, or emotional meaning, but primarily as possible sites of reconciliation pedagogies. Reconciliation pedagogies are public and school pedagogical practices that examine how certain ideas can enrich our thinking and action toward reconciliation—not through a moralistic agenda but through an approach that views such ideas both constructively and critically. Mourning and forgiveness may constitute valuable points of departure for reconciliation pedagogies, if common pain is acknowledged as an important aspect of rehumanizing the “enemy-other.” This work is difficult and the wider society may be skeptical; however, such work is about assisting a “never again” mentality develop in schools and civil society.
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I am indebted to two anonymous reviewers for suggesting a number of clarifications in the text that have enriched the discussion in a number of directions.
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A shorter version of this paper was presented at the Pathways to Reconciliation Summit in Amman, Jordan, December 14–17, 2009.
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Zembylas, M. Mourning and Forgiveness as Sites of Reconciliation Pedagogies. Bioethical Inquiry 8, 257–265 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11673-011-9316-0